We have two children, a 15 year old boy, Miles, and a 5 year old girl, Willow. This last Christmas was the best one that we have ever had. Both kids really caught the Christmas excitement and got involved in making it a fantastic time for our family. They saw the excitement and enthusiasm that my wife, Nicole, and I had and they wanted to be a part of it. By the time Christmas eve rolled around we were all thinking of exciting ways that we could surprise each other and make it special. The point that I am trying to make is that our excitement is contagious. Movements, like Christianity, are built on the excitement of a few that grows into the excitement of many because they were willing to authentically engage and share their excitement about something they believed in.
Monday morning at 11am we had another great group show up to participate in our weekly missional theology discussion. It is so exciting to see people begin to engage a new narrative and transition their thinking, moving toward a deeper understanding of what it means to be a community of people that are ministering to their community and each other. It is exciting to begin to see the conversation grow and people begin to recapture what it means to be a Christian on mission to each other, our communities and the world.
We use the words mission, missionary, missional and missiological in the church with some frequency, but do we really know what they mean? What does it mean to be “on mission”? Before we get too far down this path of defining let me first make clear that there is no one destination or definition for mission. God’s mission to the world is a living entity that is always in transition, working to keep up with the evolution of culture and human thought. God’s mission is not a simple check list of do’s, but rather an authentic commitment to be intentional about engaging our fellow humankind from a position of love.
During our discussion we arrived at the idea that mission could be divided into two basic categories that would help shed light on missional thinking and enterprise: the goal and the means. What is the goal of the Christian missionary effort and by what means do we go about working toward that goal?
This week we will discuss the goal of mission in the sermon, trying to create a way for the community at Harmony Grove to recapture a restorative excitement for God’s plan. It is important to keep in mind that when we try to simplify something down to its most basic components we stand a chance of loosing the full meaning of the concept. We have tried to navigate this tension with our definition. At its most basic level, the goal of mission is to help people transition their worldview. We are called to be means by which people find restoration, healing and grace in Christ Jesus.
Don’t forget that people of all ages are drawn to excellence and excitement. They are not drawn to an apathetic attitude or complacency. You each possess a unique missional talent within your life experience that enables you to reach a person or people that others cannot. If you have not tapped into that yet or feel like you have lost it then let us help you find it. Be a part of our Monday discussions and/or the movement that is unfolding at Harmony Grove. So, this week I leave you with a challenge: Recapture the excitement for God and His love that is so contagious and begin to be more intentional about sharing it with the world. And then share the experience with all of us so that we can be a part of your excitement.